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Why Carol Burnett Says Rehearsing Her Variety Hour Was Like Making a Broadway Show Every Week


The legendary, two-time Tony nominee says, "You can't do today what we did then."

Carol Burnett, the Emmy- and Golden Globe-winning actor (also a two-time Tony nominee and a two-time Grammy nominee), appeared on Harry Connick, Jr.'s talk show Harry this week. In gearing up for the 50th Anniversary celebration special of The Carol Burnett Show and her new Netflix series, Burnett has been making more appearances and sharing behind-the-scenes stories from her days on set.


Still, part of The Carol Burnett Show's success is a result of its time.

"We couldn't do today what we did then because we had 12 dancers, we had two guest stars a week, we had a rep company, 65 costumes a week, 28-piece orchestra, and we rehearsed it just like you would do summer stock," she said. "We'd tape like an hour and 15 minutes ... and we'd be out of there after doing all the sketches, all the musical [numbers] in a little over two hours. We did it like a Broadway show.

"Today they want to nit-pick everything and make it just perfect instead of going through it, rehearsing it, and then have a life," she said.

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